Issues of race, history, and colonialism have become an integral part of the cultural study of religion in recent years.
Not only have studies explored the historical constructions and deconstructions of particular traditions and contexts (such as ‘Hinduism’, ‘Buddhism’, etc.), but also the development of the field of the study of religion has come under close historical scrutiny. This is reflected, of course, in the developing critiques of the ‘world religions paradigm’.
Discussions in this field have been taking place (and have been published) for over two decades now, and indeed some of this has been published within the pages of this journal.
The journal Culture and Religion is now looking to bring together leading scholarship in this field and produce a landmark collection of papers that could help to set an important agenda for the study of religion over the next decade.
The main general theoretical issues that are feeding into this special issue are:
The decolonisation of scholarship and the academy. (For example, the many issues being raised by movements such as Black Lives Matter, Rhodes Must Fall, and Why is my curriculum so white?).
The decolonisation of (the structures of) the discipline. (How the knowledge economy of the discipline is organised and structured — in terms of theory, methodology, pedagogy, organisation, funding, and of course power.)
The role that European colonialism (particularly white settler colonialism) has had on the development of the discipline.
The gendered and sexualised discourses that frame racialised constructions of religion
Postcolonial critiques within the discipline on discourses of religion and religions.
Possible areas for papers could include the following, although this is not intended to be exhaustive.
- Gender, race, and empire
- Decolonising religion / Decolonising the study/teaching of religion
- Constructions of (world) religions and the idea of religion
- Religion and the secular in a postcolonial framework
- Religion, power, and economics
- Postcolonialism and religion within and outside the English-speaking world
- Religion, colonialism, and enslavement
- Queering empire and religion
- Constructions of colonial subjects and others through religion
- Provincialising Christian European-ness through the lens of empire
Culture and Religion welcomes papers that relate to these issues around the emerging area of decolonisation and postcolonialism in the study of religion/religions, with the aim to publish a special issue in 2019.
The special issue will be edited by Malory Nye, the editor of Culture and Religion.
For some preliminary thoughts on decolonisation of religion, see the following:
- Some thoughts on the Decolonisation of Religious Studies: postcolonialism, decoloniality, and the cultural study of religion
All papers intended for consideration for this special issue should be submitted through the Culture and Religion online submission portal (ScholarOne).
When submitting please mark up in your submission that you wish your paper to be considered for this special issue on Decolonisation, postcolonialism, and religion/s.
The deadline for papers to be included in the special issue is 1 September 2018.
If you are unable to submit by that date, we would still welcome your submission to Culture and Religion.
Details about length and formatting of papers can be found at the journal’s website.